‘Mirage Men’ – A Film by John Lundberg, Roland Denning, Kypros Kyprianou and Mark Pilkington

Some documentaries are sold on the story they tell, and for the most part as soon as you mention ‘conspiracy’ everything following is often taken a bit lighter. Throw in ‘America’, ‘government’ and ‘UFO’ and it’s practically early morning back-channel viewing.

Mirage Men is set to change all that. Having already started by picking up acclaimed champions and critical praise from it’s debut on the festival circuit last year, this is a film you’ve got to see.

As you may have noticed, we’re documentary junkies, and personally, I’ve got nothing but love for a conspiracy doco, especially when it’s narrated by talking heads who mostly sound like 1920’s noir detectives. But chances are you haven’t seen this story told like this before, there’s definitely a unique approach taken when putting it together.

Mirage Men is a feature documentary about the greatest real-life MacGuffin (or possibly double MacGuffin) of all time. Based on Mark Pilkington’s book of the same-name, published in 2010, the stand-out element is in the overall approach, focussing on the counter-intelligence tactics of the US government departments as opposed to a conspiracy cover-up of aliens.

At the heart of the story is Rick Doty, ex-Air Force Office of Special Investigation (OSI) agent, since slighted by the agency he once worked for. Doty’s job was essentially the finest misinformation campaign ever put forward. He and his team would routinely leak made-up documents with “nuggets of truth” to the selected marks, highly-influential people in the UFO and conspiracy circles. These targets of disinformation would be motivated by promises of having all their questions answered, and would feedback the latest news and opinions of their trusting communities.

Doty’s victims reacted in various ways, often in association with how much they were played. We’re not going to ruin anything of the film, but the lengths they went to – including planting false debris and camping with one of these victims for spotting missions – are incredible. Many of these targets appear on camera verifying Doty’s tales, and as those who were fooled at his hands add a larger weight to the story, slightly humiliated in some cases with nothing more to gain.

This is what the documentary’s about – disinformation tactics and the workings of the government. On the side the parallel journey (that some may argue is stronger) is on the existence of the conspiracy, but this can be taken on by the viewer at their own discretion. Either way, here is a topic that the government thought was important enough to assign an active disinformation counter-intelligence campaign to through the sixties, seventies and eighties, and an insight in to how they either did, or might’ve done it.

So if no decisive endings then what are we left with? The perfect offering really, which is no answers, just food for thought. “In the words of attorney and UFO researcher Peter Gersten, “how do you study something that controls…possibly even this program?”

At the end of the ninety minutes you’re left with the realisation that everything you watched could just be another step in this campaign of manipulation and misdirection. And how far might that go? In the same way that Doin’ It In The Park got us back on the court, Mirage Men gets the brain going in new-old ways. For all we know, YouTube could be a tool to bury videos that need to be shared, bombarded by idiot clips, and Google a tool that scours crap to hide the Encyclopedic knowledge that gets searched.

Like we said, this will get you thinking.

Only one more thing to share, and that’s  the fascinating “innoculation” theory. False information “leaked” (with parts of truth in it) was often stories so unbelievable they make those who buy in to them look ridiculous. One suggestion to this is to look at these stories as “innoculations” – from which you’re given a small piece of truth, and once you’ve had that and accepted it you build up immunity to the larger story of truth once it comes through.

Check this documentary out, you can grab a copy straight from source here: http://www.miragemen.com/

Big ups all involved. Trailer below with synopsis underneath it directly from the makers.

How the US government created a myth that took over the world.

UFOs: weapons of mass deception… For over 60 years teams within the US Air Force and Intelligence services exploited and manipulated beliefs about UFOs and ET visitations as part of their counterintelligence programmes. In doing so they spawned a mythology so powerful that it captivated and warped many brilliant minds, including several of their own. Now, for the first time, some of those behind these operations, and their victims, speak out, revealing a true story that is part Manchurian Candidate and part Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

MIRAGE MEN blurbs:

“This is an incredible story about deception and tomfoolery in high places. The filmmakers have uncovered a tale that tells us that everything we thought we knew about UFOs is wrong. And the truth – the true truth – is much more interesting.”
Jon Ronson – Author of The Psychopath Test, The Men Who Stare at Goats.

“Really original in the story it tells… Mirage Men presents an astonishing new perspective on the UFO mythology, and opens up the much wider question of how we know what we know about the world outside… a brilliant piece of work.”
Adam Curtis – Director of The Power of Nightmares, The Century of the Self.